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Feed composition analysis

This page considers the cost of the protein component in dairy cow feed rations and allows to analyze the cost of protein contained in different protein-rich animal feed sources.
Goal of the page is to promote an economic analysis of the protein component in the feed so as to allow the selection of the best possible protein source, bearing of course in mind that any change of ingredients in the feed ration implies synergic reactions which must be carefully assessed.

The first chart exhibits the monthly market value of 100 kg of the Simulated Feed Ration.
The Simulated Feed Ration is a theoretical feed model exclusively based on the use of corn and soybean extraction meal 44%; this has been taken as a model since the two constituent ingredients are price drivers for all the raw materials available on the market. This feed ration can therefore be used as an indication for the cost trend of concentrated feed.
Composition of the Simulated Feed Ration is as follows:
Corn meal70%
Soybean extraction meal 44% protein30%
Raw protein as fed19%
Value in MFU1,05
The Simulated Feed Ration, fed in amounts varying between 11 and 13 kilograms, with the addition of forages of corn silage and hay (for the production of liquid milk and Grana Padano) or of only hay (for the production of Parmigiano Reggiano), allows to cover the theoretical production requirements of a multiparous cow producing 30 kg of milk with a 4% fat content. The monthly price of the products corresponds to the average monthly quotation of the Commodities Exchange of the Milan Chamber of Commerce.

The second chart shows the weight (in percentage) of the price of each of the two components on the total cost of the Simulated Feed Ration as well as the price percentage variation compared to the previous month.

The third chart compares the Simulated Feed Ration Cost and the Farm-gate Milk Price in Lombardy (Italy).

The fourth chart exhibits the "Milk:Feed Ratio", defined as the price of 100kg of Farm-gate Milk in Lombardy (Italy) / the cost of 100kg of Simulated Feed Ration The Milk:Feed Ratio represents how many kg of Simulated Feed Ration could be purchased with the gross revenue from 1kg of milk at the stated price.

The fifth chart shows the cost of protein obtained from different animal feeds. The calculation is as follows: market value of the feed / protein titre (as fed) The protein titre for each product is included in the table.
The market value considered corresponds to the monthly average of the weekly quotations of the Commodities Exchange of the Milan Chamber of Commerce. Source of the protein titre used is INEA - Istituto Nazionale di Economia Agraria.

Page compiled with the contribution of Dr. Roberto Preti, Veterinary Physician.

Chart 1.

Chart 2.

Show/Hide the historical trend of the average monthly price
of Italian Corn


€/ton Italy, Milan - Monthly average price

2005 2010 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 % on prev. month % on 2019
January 125 146 150 173 178 177 187 173 +0,58% -7,51%
February 124 144 146 174 180 177 185
March 125 146 146 171 182 179 182
April 126 154 148 177 182 185 181
May 123 156 143 185 183 190 180
June 130 159 140 204 185 191 184
July 133 170 154 194 190 189 182
August 135 193 156 185 185 195 179
September 131 203 157 171 178 185 176
October 130 205 167 170 176 182 173
November 125 210 174 176 178 181 172
December 128 228 171 177 178 183 172
Jan - Jan 125 146 150 173 178 177 187 173
Change (1) -7,94% +16,63% +2,86% +15,67% +2,96% -0,84% +5,52% -7,51%
Average 128 175 154 180 181 184 179
Change (1) -6,46% +36,71% -11,72% +16,32% +0,85% +1,54% -2,39%
Milan Chamber of Commerce
1) change from the same period of previous year , except for years 2005, 2010, 2015, where the change is from the same period 5 years ago
  = min price
= max price
Show/Hide the historical trend of the average monthly price
of Italian Soybean extraction meal 44%


€/ton Italy, Milan - Monthly average price

2005 2010 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020 % on prev. month % on 2019
January 212 337 414 333 387 346 349 355 +2,31% +1,50%
February 210 327 418 329 388 386 339
March 222 323 418 325 369 406 336
April 227 327 410 340 355 431 338
May 232 336 381 405 346 451 332
June 250 337 376 435 334 391 352
July 253 328 401 415 339 371 335
August 239 343 382 373 318 362 328
September 224 347 369 355 319 349 328
October 219 338 364 357 329 358 333
November 220 357 359 374 327 355 336
December 231 376 342 375 343 355 347
Jan - Jan 212 337 414 333 387 346 349 355
Change (1) +0,37% +59,15% +22,90% -19,66% +16,30% -10,72% +1,09% +1,50%
Average 228 339 386 367 346 381 338
Change (1) -5,11% +48,56% +13,90% -4,82% -5,73% +9,94% -11,27%
Milan Chamber of Commerce
1) change from the same period of previous year , except for years 2005, 2010, 2015, where the change is from the same period 5 years ago
  = min price
= max price

Chart 3.


Show/Hide the comparison between the Simulated Feed Ration Cost and
the Farm-gate Milk Price in Lombardy (Italy) since 2010



Show/Hide the comparison between the Simulated Feed Ration Cost and
the Farm-gate Milk Price in Lombardy (Italy), Germany and France


Chart 4.

The following chart represents how many kg of Simulated Feed Ration could be purchased with the gross revenue from 1kg of milk.

Chart 5.

The values presented in the following chart show the cost of 1000 g (1kg) of protein obtained from the raw materials considered.

Example: the value of Italian soybean extraction meal 44% on January 2013 was equal to 1.02. This means that the price of 1000 g of protein provided by Italian soybean extraction meal 44% was in that month of €1,02.
Feed Protein Content
% as fed
Rapeseed extraction meal 34.4
Whole grain sunflower extraction meal 24.0
Decorticated sunflower extraction meal 33.6
Foreign soybean extraction meal 44% 43.4
Italian soybean extraction meal 44% 43.4
Foreign decorticated soybean extraction meal 49.0
Italian decorticated soybean extraction meal 49.0

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